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Volume 10 No. 22

Events and Attractions

Tickets for the Europa League final in Amsterdam are already being sold for more than $3,700 on the online ticket marketplace Viagogo, according to Fifield & Gibson of the London GUARDIAN. Such prices "are leaving Chelsea supporters further incensed as they struggle to come to terms with UEFA's official allocation for the game against Benfica." The two clubs have received only 9,800 tickets each for the match "at what will be a reduced-capacity 48,000-seat Amsterdam ArenA" on May 15 -- amounting to only 40% of the gate -- with the remainder granted to sponsors, official partners and the UEFA "football family." A proportion of Chelsea's allocation "will be offered to club staff," with tickets priced from £39-117 ($60.7-$182.1), and UEFA "has advertised gold and platinum packages" for the event at €690 ($904.5) and €890 ($1,166.7), respectively, on its website. However, Viagogo, whose U.K. operation is Chelsea's official ticket partner, "already has 11 pages of available tickets being sold by third parties," with prices as high as $3,712.70, plus a 15% booking fee and postage, despite a face value of €45-135 ($59-$177). Chelsea Supporters Trust member Tim Rolls said, "The allocation is clearly inadequate and I would appeal to UEFA to think about changing this in future" (GUARDIAN, 5/3).

TICKETMASTER GETS '14 COMMONWEALTH GAMES: The BBC reported, ticketing firm Ticketmaster has been chosen to sell "about one million tickets for sporting events at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow." The company will be responsible for online and telephone sales along with box office outlets at game venues. Ticketmaster will also be a sponsor of the games as well as of the official ticketing services provider (BBC, 5/2).

The multi-million dollar Auckland League Nines tournament is set to be staged at Eden Park in February next year, according to Michael Burgess of the NEW ZEALAND HERALD. The NZ$3M ($2.6M) event will be the richest in terms of prize money. It also "looks likely to be one of the biggest single sporting events on this side of the Tasman in 2014" -- needing only to achieve the buy-in of National Rugby League players and "in particular star players, who will pull in the crowds, to outrank the Wellington Sevens (70,000) and sit behind the V8 Supercars at Pukekohe (117,000 over three days.)" The Australian Rugby League Commission and the NRL are "fully behind the event, seeing both commercial and footballing benefits." All 16 NRL clubs "have backed the proposal." ATEED (Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development), the Auckland council's standalone agency, has rubber-stamped the idea, committing to a "multi-million" dollar level of funding. The event will be held across a weekend at Eden Park, with group games to be played on the Saturday and finals on the Sunday. Dates "are still to be confirmed" but Feb. 15-16 are a likely option (NZ HERALD, 5/5).

The Austrian Ski Federation (ÖSV) "has submitted a bid to host the 2019 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in the Tyrolian village of Seefeld," according to the AUSTRIAN PRESS AGENCY. Seefeld hosted the Nordic World Ski Championships back in '85. The last Nordic World Ski Championships on Austrian soil took place in Ramsau in '99. Originally, the ÖSV "wanted to submit a bid to host 2021 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships." However, after all the necessary preparations "had been completed over the last couple months the federation decided to submit an earlier bid." FIS will award the '19 event at the 49th Int'l Ski Congress in Barcelona on June 5. The other candidates are: Almaty, Kazakhstan; Oberstdorf, Germany and Planica, Slovenia (APA, 5/3).